Here’s how passengers are killing taxiwallas in Mumbai
Their relaxing cigarette makes taxis pushing taxi drivers to death. Seventy-nine percent of the 400 taxi drivers in Mumbai are forced to smoke passively every day. Non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke have an increased risk of developing lung cancer and may suffer premature death.
However, 36 percent. 100 drivers are partly responsible for this situation. They have not put a “no smoking” sign on their taxis to prevent passengers from inflating.
The warning was made mandatory by the state’s transportation service in 2011. The driver and passenger can be fined R300 for smoking in a taxi.
The findings come from an ongoing study of drivers in the city, which began last November by the preventive diagnostic service at Tata Memorial Hospital in Parel, the largest cancer treatment facility in India. So far, 400 drivers were interviewed.
The survey also found that passengers in taxis 18 percent who took a warning did not notice. Approximately 10 percent were even offended to be told to fend off their cigarettes. Some dodgy drivers also offered a drag when asked to quit smoking.
The smaller the space, the more likely
Dr. Pankaj Chaturvedi, head and throat cancer surgeon at Tata Memorial, said that drivers have a greater risk of passive smoking in other public spaces. Secondhand smoke can reach very high levels in a car, as it is a small enclosed space.
“Smoking in taxis puts them in danger. Strict rules must be in place to protect their health,” recommends Dr. Chaturvedi.
On Sunday, the reporter at midday inspected 20 taxis, but none reported the warning signal.
Mohammad Rafi, 52, of Sion, who runs the taxis for 30 years, accused the Regional Transportation Office (RTO) of failing to provide an adhesive warning sign.
“When I drove my old taxi there four years, I have shown the warning.” RTO officials have not given me the label when I recorded my new vehicle.
He said several passengers were injured when asked to stop smoking in a taxi. “The government should raise awareness-raising taxi drivers about the dangers posed by smoking.”
ERO is also to blame
Some drivers in the middle of the day, also spoke complained that the tag is bad and washed in the rain.
“It had a warning signal, but it happened during a rain shower there one day,” said Vijay Singh, another driver from Sion. “The adhesive used is of poor quality. We have to go to the RTO for the seal, which is a process that takes time.”